Can 239 projects scattered along 59 miles of concrete, graffiti and polluted urban runoff bring nature back to some of the more forgotten corners of Los Angeles? Can the Los Angeles River be 'revitalized'?
The long awaited report for the Los Angeles River Revitalization was finally released today. In total, those projects would cost at least $2 billion dollars to implement, but could easily be the catalyst for the next wave of Los Angeles' favorite pastime, (no, it's not wagering on cher's plastic surgery), it's real estate speculation.
I hope the plan's impact goes beyond building a few bridges as city engineer Gary Lee Moore is quoted by the LATimes: "We're talking about signature bridges — a bridge that people really want to see and that will allow them to see the river".
Is that all the paper can say about this report? You'd think that the City of Los Angeles and the Army Core of Engineers were the genius's behind all the hard work. Gotta give it to the Times for shafting the design team by not identifying or interviewing any of it's members in the most recent article. The team was lead by Tetra Tech, and included Civitas, Wenk Associates, Mia Lehrer + Associates, The Robert Group, GCG Rose & Kindel, Transportation & Land Use Collaborative of Southern California (TLUC), Urban Partners, Asset Strategies, HNTB Architecture, Inc., Urban Semillas, and David Marquez.
Tetra Tech is one of those massive global engineering firms based in Pasadena, was also responsible for the Alameda Corridor (20 mile long hole with train tracks connecting LA Harbor to Downtown) and as the MEP for the Guggie in Bilboa. My first awareness of TT was with their radical terraforming proposal for the Salton Sea, but their propaganda (opps, marketing piece) for the LA River adds a few nuances that the LATimes missed. But engineering firms aren't known for subtleties and nuances, and that's where Bill Wenk, Mia Lehrer and Civitas really have carried the project. Hope to read more from the designers soon!
To read the entire report, here's the link
Finally, can you say 'sketchup'?